Face Jugs History

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The tradition of face jugs dates back to Egyptian times. The first face jugs traces back to the African slaves working on plantations, evolving toward white potters, and to a famous potter, Mitchell Grafton. It was in the 1800s when black slaves made face jugs. Some slaves worked in Jamaica in pottery villages and others worked in Edgefield Pottery Plantations. There is a number of reasons of why these slaves made face jugs. They made them to protect their identity, and as grave markers, because slaves weren’t allowed to have headstones. It was believed that having the face jug on their grave would ward off all evil spirits. Face jugs also represented ancestor worship, voodoo, and christianity. One of the most famous African-American potters was Dave the Slave. At the time, slaves weren’t allowed to know how to read and write, but Dave did. He was one of the few slaves to ever sign his pots and never get caught, which made him kind of a legend. It wasn’t until the early 1900s that white potters began making face jugs. They began making face jugs to supplement their income and keep from going out of business. These jugs were also made and sold to tourists for money, In the 1920s is when prohibition occurred, which was a nationwide ban on alcohol in the United States, and thats when moonshine and bootlegging began. During the prohibition period, Ugly…show more content…
Most of his pottery revolves around animals and devil looking faces. His pottery are full of creative characteristics and he expresses many different designs in his faces. Grafton stated that he enjoys learning new techniques to be able to improve and keep things interesting. A piece of advice that Grafton gives is: “if you see someone doing a technique you don’t know how to do, figure it out. Copy their work until you have their technique and can combine it with other techniques to make something

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